Positions on the European City for the 21st Century



Constant change is what marks the history of the European city. Over centuries, architecture’s reactions to social disruptions—natural disaster, plague, or war—have fashioned the city into an engine of civilization. And bound up with this has been the promise of economic independence, social cohesion, and individual freedom.

Now fundamental challenges, such as climate change, are bringing cities face to face with new transformations that call into question the continuity and sustainability of the ethical foundations underpinning urban ways of life. Bold and decisive steps are needed.

How far can urban planning, landscape planning, and architecture foster the vital processes of change? How can the city offset possible losses caused by altered lifestyles, integrate new technologies, or rehearse new forms of behaviour and ultimately sublimate them into a functioning culture?

In this volume, the members of the Architecture Section of the Akademie der Künste Berlin and their invited guests from all over Europe introduce their positions by means of projects, visions, and manifestos. Essays by selected authors with different viewpoints supplement the practical discourse.

Published by Tim Rieniets, Matthias Sauerbruch, and Jörn Walter on behalf of the Akademie der Künste, Berlin.

With a photoessay by Erik-Jan Ouwerkerk.

The publication is accompanying the exhibition “urbainable – stadthaltig” by the Akademie der Künste from September 5 until November 22, 2020 in Berlin, Germany.

Die deutsche Ausgabe dieses Titels finden Sie hier.


Weight 1075 g
Dimensions 274 × 218 × 22 mm
Edited by

Tim Rieniets, Matthias Sauerbruch, Jörn Walter on behalf of the Akademie der Künste, Berlin

Essays by

Steffen Braun, Jenny Erpenbeck, Christoph Grafe, Britta Peters, Edzard Reuter, Tim Rieniets, Matthias Sauerbruch, Jörn Walter, and Harald Welzer.

Photo Essay by

Erik-Jan Ouwerkerk

Project texts by

Fritz Auer, Thomas Auer, Klaus Bollinger, Michael Bräuer, Arno Brandlhuber, Winfried Brenne, Kees Christiaanse, Annette Gigon, Almut Grüntuch-Ernst, Guido Hager, Peter Haimerl, Thomas Herzog, Regine Keller & Christiane Thalgott, Karla Kowalski, Anne Lacaton, Pierre Laconte, Regine Leibinger, Hilde Léon, HG Merz, Günter Nagel, Florian Nagler, Irina Raud, Ian Ritchie, Matthias Sauerbruch, Jörg Schlaich, Helmut C. Schulitz, Thomas Sieverts, Enrique Sobejano, Volker Staab, Kjetil T. Thorsen, Marco Venturi, Jörn Walter, and Wilfried Wang.



Graphic Design

Heimann + Schwantes, Berlin


Hardback, full color, and thread sewn


21,5 x 27,5 cm


approx. 240

Page count

224 pages

Publication Date

September 2020



Project descriptions by

Fritz Auer
Thomas Auer
Klaus Bollinger
Michael Bräuer
Arno Brandlhuber
Winfried Brenne
Kees Christiaanse
Annette Gigon
Almut Grüntuch-Ernst
Guido Hager
Peter Haimerl
Thomas Herzog
Regine Keller & Christiane Thalgott
Karla Kowalski
Anne Lacaton
Pierre Laconte
Regine Leibinger
Hilde Léon
HG Merz
Günter Nagel
Florian Nagler
Irina Raud
Ian Ritchie
Matthias Sauerbruch
Jörg Schlaich
Helmut C. Schulitz
Thomas Sieverts
Enrique Sobejano
Volker Staab
Kjetil T. Thorsen
Marco Venturi
Jörn Walter
Wilfried Wang

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